EU rules against cheap online alcohol. By Dan Martin

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Christmas shoppers hoping to buy cut price alcohol via the internet will be upset today while the Treasury will be breathing a sigh of relief after the EU decided consumers cannot go online to purchase cheap drinks and cigarettes from anywhere in Europe.

In a surprising decision, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) did not follow a previous adjudication from its advocate general which said goods can be bought in one EU state and delivered to another with only the duty in the country of origin having to be paid.

In a statement, the ECJ said: "Only products acquired and transported personally by private individuals are exempt from excise duty in the member state of importation."

Experts had predicted the court would agree with the advocate general leading to claims from UK alcohol and tobacco r...

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